In Shelter Cove by Barbara Freethy

I took a foray into straight romance today. Most times straight romance doesn’t hold my attention. I need a crazy murderer with a sadistic tendencies. Or maybe a hot guy that can turn into some kind of jungle creature. Therefore straight romance generally bores me out of my mind and I give up half way through. Or do the dreaded skip to the end cheat.  While blogging this summer on Lucy Monroe’s site I got a chance to read an excerpt from Barbara. I was intrigued and went directly to my local library web page and found the wait list for the book.  It took awhile to get it but I finally received it this week. Once opening it I could not put it down! It sucked me in and held me for hours.

Brianna is a grieving woman. Her husband has just died in jail, weeks from his release for a crime he swears he didn’t commit. Three priceless paintings were stolen and all fingers pointed directly to Derek. Though he swore his innocence daily, he was convicted and sentenced to 5 years in jail. His faithful wife (along with their young son) stood by his side, screaming for justice to all that can hear.

Now, she has moved back to the scene of the crime. Brianna is unwavering in her attempt to prove the innocence of her late husband, if only for the sake of their son. She immediately runs into Derek’s old friend (and cop who arrested him), Jason. Brianna’s feelings for Jason are torn between hatred for what he did to Derek, and a fierce passion that heats up her lonely heart.

They must work together to find out what truly happened the night the paintings disappeared. Even if doing so makes them open the door to their hearts that was shut long ago. And discovering that nothing (and nobody) is what they may seem.

The setting of the book is a very small town on the coast. Because of this, there are a lot of story lines being told. I’m assuming some were carried over from the first book in the series (that I have not read yet). Though, now I’m heading back over to the library site to see if they have it. Kinda a 50/50 chance as our local county libraries leave a lot to be desired sometimes.

If you like romance with just a touch of intriguing mystery, then I think you will like this book. It was fast paced and the characters were enjoyable. Lucas, the 4 yr old son of Brianna and Derek, is adorable. His grasping for a father figure is heart wrenching.  I even found myself misty eyed in several parts. The love scenes were moderate and read easily. I would definitely recommend!

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